Construction Industry Ruled Exempt from Industy Related Apprenticeship Programs (IRAPs)

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  • March 19, 2020

The U.S. Department of Labor Issues Industry Recognized Apprenticeship Programs (IRAPS) Final Rule Exempting the Construction Industry

The U.S. Department of Labor’s final rule published on March 11, 2020 and effective May 11, 2020 will help expand apprenticeship programs in the United States by establishing a system to advance the development of quality IRAPs while exempting the construction industry.

The construction industry has been successfully managing widespread and privately financed DOL registered apprenticeship programs for over 80 years, therefore the department concluded that the construction industry does not need to be included in the plan.  The DOL received close to 327,000 public comments, the majority of which opposed recognizing IRAPs in the construction industry due to the high utilization and long standing success of its existing registered apprenticeship programs.  “The Department has determined that programs that seek to train apprentices to perform construction activities, as described in 29.30, will not be recognized as IRAPs.”

Secretary of Labor Eugene Scalia said in a statement “Apprenticeships are widely recognized to be a highly effective job training approach for American workers and for employers seeking the skilled workforce needed in today’s changing workplace.  This new rule offers employers, community colleges and others a flexible, innovative way to quickly expand apprenticeship in telecommunications, health care, cyber security and other sectors where apprenticeships currently are not widely available.”

Thank you to all who supported our position to exempt the construction industry.  Your voice was heard and contributed to this win!

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*As released on March 10, 2020 by the U.S. Department of Labor